Europe’s Flying Forward research project announces 10 live demonstrations showing urban air mobility solutions

Europe’s Flying Forward research project has announced 10 demonstration projects, aimed at validating solutions for Urban Air Mobility (UAM). The demonstrations will be carried out in five Living Labs across Europe: Eindhoven High Tech Campus, Milan’s Ospedale San Raffaele scientific hospitalisation and treatment institute, Tartu Science Park, University of Oulu and Zaragoza City Council.

The Living Lab partners expect to provide high-impact demonstrators. They will also specify their needs and requirements to ensure compliance with regulations, in terms of non-functional properties, safety, tools and processes. Flying Forward has defined three stages of development for these demonstrators:

Stage 1: Regulatory, governance and technology R&D as well as technical integration (M3-M12). On the first iteration, we will research, develop and integrate regulatory, governance and technology frameworks based on demonstrators’ concepts and users’ requirements and needs. Within this phase, the focus will be on R&D of the regulatory, governance and technical development to deliver a first integrated MVP (based on test data) in M12 to be validated in Living Labs.

Stage 2:  Experimentation and validation (M13-M24). On the second iteration, we will focus on cross-disciplinary R&D by integrating and validating the MVP results deployed in a test environment (lab and field) in the 5 Living Labs. At this stage, Living Labs will prepare the infrastructure and start piloting the different proposed demonstrators. As a result, we will validate operational procedures and mechanisms for an effective interface with U-Space service providers.

Stage 3: Regulatory, governance and technology integration propel scalability and sustainability (M25-M33). A third iteration will be done with an updated methodology and technological innovations. As the main outcome, we will provide a TRL6 solution for safe UAM operations in urban environments. We will provide proposals for potential regulatory changes and recommendations as a means of compliance. For this, a close coordination with EASA is pivotal to ensure complementarity and consistency within EASA activities.

Flying Forward 2020 is a three-year collaborative research project that will develop a new Urban Air Mobility (UAM) ecosystem aligned with the Digital Government Transformation (DGT) of European countries, which focuses on incorporating Urban Air Mobility within the geospatial data infrastructure of cities.

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